Caring for Canvas

Submitted: Friday, Feb 14, 2003 at 10:56
ThreadID: 3367 Views:3843 Replies:3 FollowUps:0
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I have recently bought a 98 model Off Road Cavalier camper which is in excellent condition and am wondering if there is any special T.L.C i should do to the Canvas just to keep it in top condition.I have read about water proofing but mine doesnt leak YET ??.It was wet down when new as i new the previous owner.

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Reply By: Member - Andrew O - Friday, Feb 14, 2003 at 11:54

Friday, Feb 14, 2003 at 11:54
The biggest thing is to dry it out asap if it has been packed away wet. Even if its still raining when you get home, dont leave it folded, set it up again in the rain and let it air. Mould/mildew can start real easy, and thats the beginning of the end for canvas.
AnswerID: 13101

Reply By: Member - Melissa - Friday, Feb 14, 2003 at 13:40

Friday, Feb 14, 2003 at 13:40
Hi Pin,

There seem to be differing opinions on this subject but number 1, let it dry out as mentioned above. If the canvas isn't leaking, leave it alone. Over time, it may start to leak around seams, then you can get some paint-on waterproof sealer (dries clear) which from personal experience, does work. I don't advocate the use of any detergents or cleaning agents on the canvas. Also, if you're hosing it off don't use high pressure or you could damage the fibres.

Other than that, when you fold the camper up, just take care that there are no sharp or protruding objects in contact with the canvas as they could wear a hole in the canvas, if not right thru certainly create a weak spot. With regard to zips etc, best way to prevent them from breaking is to make sure doors are fully unzipped before going in and out. This is especially the case if you have kids in and out all the time.

Enjoy your camper.

:o) Melissa
AnswerID: 13110

Reply By: Longhorn Bags 'N' Swags - Saturday, Feb 15, 2003 at 00:29

Saturday, Feb 15, 2003 at 00:29
Hi Pin,
I manufacture canvas products and use wax converters canvas which is dynaproofed. The company supplies us with a care label which I would happily scan and email to you. It is really interesting as it says that you should completely wet then dry your canvas approx 4 times to make it really water proof. Most canvasses are only water resistant and should always be completely dry before packing away. NEVER clean your canvas with any detergents etc. as this will remove the proofing. If you do have a major disaster and need to clean your canvas you can re-proof (most canvas manufacturers should be able to help you out with this product). The only other reason your camper may leak is if the wrong type of thread has been used in the seams. Poly cotton thread will swell when wet and seal the needle punch holes, however polyester thread is preferred for products that will be in the sun a lot as it lasts longer (catch 22 actually)!
Anyway drop me an email at if you would like me to send you a copy of the canvas care label.
AnswerID: 13174

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